- Hardcover: 192 pages
- Publisher: Kodansha Amer Inc; 1st edition (July 1990)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0870119923
- ISBN-13: 978-4770014924
- Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,764,972 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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What the Maid Saw: Eight Psychic Tales Hardcover – July, 1990
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"If a beautiful, well-educated, well-bred young woman chooses to work as a maid, there has to be a hidden reason--especially when it seems that almost every other eighteen-year-old girl in modern Japan is living a carefree life of ease.
Nanase's secret is simple, but deadly: she reads minds. She reads minds with such clarity that she thinks people have spoken what they've only thought. [sic]The discovery of her psychic abilities, Nanase knows, means turning her life into a freak show--a fate she dreads more than anything else.
As a live-in maid, Nanase believes she can hide, but it is precisely because she is psychic that trouble always follows. With her knowledge of the private lives and innermost thoughts of the people she lives with, Nanase is inevitably drawn into the tackiness of [sic]the life she has run from.
From the father and son who are sleeping with the same bar hostess, to the family with a stench so strong they cannot smell it, to the early-retired gentleman who thinks that to rape her is to regain his youth, to the nagging mother's death screams that will not go away,...there is enough pettiness, greed, lust, and horror for all.
Here is a look into the workings of "the Japanese mind" such as one will not have imagined before!"
Ok, now for the review itself. I found this to be a fantastic book, and a very fast read. I had a lot of trouble putting it dow, which made me a few minutes late for work (so be wary of its ability to suck you in). As the title of the book already points out, it contains 8 stories centered around the same telepathic maid, Nanase. The books starts out when she is a late teenager and the story ends when she...well, I won't reveal that, you'll just have to read the book to find out!
As the statement inside the dust-jacket stated, it's basically a study of human nature and the façade that is put on to keep up appearances. It's a look into the darker side of our thoughts from an outsiders point of view, pointing that our logical thoughts might be terrifying and horrible to others.
I am rating this book 5 stars and I think it deserves every one of those. It's fantastic to read, and I am sorry to say that it is not currently in print on Amazons site, so unless you want to spend a pretty penny on it, try checking out your local used book store or stalk the online market for users selling it at a reasonable price.
I greatly recommend this book to people who are fans of Alfred Hitchcock, The Twilight Zone, Dark Shadows, or anything else of that nature.
As it stands as I am writing this review, this is the second of Tsutsui's translated books that I have read and they have both been marvelous. Mr. Tsutsui is a phenomenal author who knows how to execute a story and suck the reader into his world. He is definitely a first class author all the way.